FORUMS: list search recent posts

DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX

COW Forums : NAS - Network Attached Storage

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Alex James
DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 3, 2016 at 1:16:11 pm

Hey All,

I work for a small production company based in Dublin, Ireland. We have 10 members of staff with 5 Edit suites predominantly using FCPX with the potential of expanding to more. We've built our post production workflow around working off external HDD's for years now with more external drives mirrored for backups etc. We have recently purchased a Red Raven and things are starting to get out of control in terms of Data Management. Not only is storage and issue but there are lots of other problems like a number of projects on the same drive, meaning only one editor can work on that drive at once for example. All the other advantages of NAS go without saying and therefore I feel it's about time we sorted something out.

I've being doing lots of research and I'm keen to create our own system. Personally I've been a Hackintosh user for years and am familiar with building hardware etc. I appreciate there are lots of companies out there who will do this for a premium although I'm keen to do this ourselves to have a full understanding of the system and for budgetary reasons.

I'm going to break this down into sections to make it a little easier to follow and hopefully it will make it easier to refer to them later on:

1. Network
2. Server
3. RAID




1. Network

After doing a lot of research i've concluded (with thanks to the likes of Bob Zelin) that 10GBe CAT6 ethernet is the only way to go. I thought i’d struck upon a hidden gem with thunderbolt networking but turns out the speeds are inconsistent. Fiber (SFP+) is also an option but seems to be more expensive than CAT6. Is my conclusion correct here?

Other than the switch the main expense for the entire system seems to be the Thunderbolt to 10GBe adaptors to connect the Macs to the network. The best price I can find is either the Sonnet Twin 10G @ £500:

http://www.sonnettech.com/product/twin10g.html
https://www.scan.co.uk/products/sonnet-twin-10g-twin-10g-thunderbolt-2-to-d...

or the AKiTiO Thunderbolt Adapter @ £450:

https://www.akitio.com/adapters/thunder2-10g-network-adapter
http://www.span.com/product/AKiTiO-Thunderbolt-Adapter-Thunder2-10G-Network...

I have seen a variety of other options from the likes of small tree and sanlink but these seem the most reasonable.

Does anyone have any reasons which would be the best Thunderbolt to 10GBe to purchase?

I understand there are also separate enclosures you can buy and add your own card although after doing some research this won't really save us anything and seems likes more effort. Would you agree?


2. Server

So this is where the world of networking broadens like crazy. I hoping to create a rack mountable system where we can add additional storage later on and RAID’s etc. I'm going to break this section up further to try and make things easier to follow:

a. Hackintosh
b. Mac Mini
c. Mac Pro




a. The Hackintosh seems like a very appealing option as we can get great power on a budget. The idea that puts me off this is, being a hackintosh user, i know it requires alot of TLC. Although when setup and the server is working it shouldn't need any maintenance but for things like updates its troublesome.

b. The Mac Mini I think could be my favorite option as it’s compact and has full apple support. My only worry is if this will be powerful enough to run the Server/RAID etc?

One idea that i found that looks great was the High Point NA381TB although have no idea where to purchase this in the UK and Ireland:

http://www.highpoint-tech.com/USA_new/series_NA381TB_overview.htm

Or something along the lines of the Sonnet xMac mini server:

http://www.sonnettech.com/product/xmacminiserver.html

Does anyone have any incite on these or alternatives? this probably the area i need most help in.


c. We actually own a Mac Pro which could work although don’t think we’d be willing to give it up just to run a server when it's such a great machine for editing.


3. RAID / Storage

What we’re looking for here is something rack expandable starting at around the 64TB mark or maybe larger. We already own a huge amount of 3.5” Seagate 4TB drives that could be repurposed. We’d like a RAID that's rebuildable in the event of drive failure as the server will now be our only source of DATA and needs to be reliable.

In this category there are many options but i've boiled it down to this particular card- High Point 2760A which looks good and OSX compatible:

http://www.highpoint-tech.com/USA_new/CS-series_rr276x-rr274x.htm

Any other ideas?

I haven't done too much research yet on enclosures other than the one mentioned above but seems relatively straightforward. Once I have the correct cards that is compatible with our server.



There’s a lot more to mention and speak about but I think this is a good basis to start talking without overwhelming!

Please ask me as many questions as you need and I really appreciate your thoughts and replies.

Thanks,

Alex

Alex James

TINY ARK


Return to posts index

Bob Zelin
Re: DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 3, 2016 at 7:41:04 pm

replies below -

I work for a small production company based in Dublin, Ireland. We have 10 members of staff with 5 Edit suites predominantly using FCPX with the potential of expanding to more.

REPLY - remember, no matter what you choose - you need a system that will support NFS network protocol, or you can't write libraries to the shared volume from FCP-X.


1. Network

After doing a lot of research i've concluded (with thanks to the likes of Bob Zelin) that 10GBe CAT6 ethernet is the only way to go. I thought i’d struck upon a hidden gem with thunderbolt networking but turns out the speeds are inconsistent. Fiber (SFP+) is also an option but seems to be more expensive than CAT6. Is my conclusion correct here?

REPLY - you are correct. Fiber SFP+ will be too expensive and too complex for you. And yes, currently Thunderbolt networking does not work. And the Accusys system only supports 3 Thunderbolt clients and you need 5+, so you must use 10GbE.


Other than the switch the main expense for the entire system seems to be the Thunderbolt to 10GBe adaptors to connect the Macs to the network. The best price I can find is either the Sonnet Twin 10G @ £500:

REPLY - the main expense is the RAID array. You must have 8 drives running for a reliable system, so you need a RAID box with 8 drives, and a host card. The Sonnet Twin 10G is excellent, and you can certainly run all your clients without any thunderbolt to 10G adaptor, and still get 100 MB/sec per client - enough for 1080i editing.


http://www.sonnettech.com/product/twin10g.html
https://www.scan.co.uk/products/sonnet-twin-10g-twin-10g-thunderbolt-2-to-d.....

or the AKiTiO Thunderbolt Adapter @ £450:

https://www.akitio.com/adapters/thunder2-10g-network-adapter
http://www.span.com/product/AKiTiO-Thunderbolt-Adapter-Thunder2-10G-Network.....

REPLY - the Akitio thunderbolt to 10G will die from heat failure after 8 hours of continuous use. Get the Sonnet.

I have seen a variety of other options from the likes of small tree and sanlink but these seem the most reasonable.

You are correct, but Promise and Small Tree are also both excellent.

Does anyone have any reasons which would be the best Thunderbolt to 10GBe to purchase?

REPLY - Sonnet, but you can run without any adaptors, use native 1GbE and still get 100 MB/sec.

I understand there are also separate enclosures you can buy and add your own card although after doing some research this won't really save us anything and seems likes more effort. Would you agree?

REPLY - I agree


2. Server

So this is where the world of networking broadens like crazy. I hoping to create a rack mountable system where we can add additional storage later on and RAID’s etc. I'm going to break this section up further to try and make things easier to follow:

a. Hackintosh
b. Mac Mini
c. Mac Pro

REPLY - I have never done this with a Hackintosh. The Mac Mini is only a single thunderbolt buss, which must run the thunderbolt to 10GbE adaptor AND the RAID array, so it won't support more than 3 - 4 clients before you get Beach Balls. So you can use a new Mac Pro Cylinder, an old Mac Pro 4,1 or 5,1 with PCIe card, or get a dedicated NAS box.





a. The Hackintosh seems like a very appealing option as we can get great power on a budget. The idea that puts me off this is, being a hackintosh user, i know it requires alot of TLC. Although when setup and the server is working it shouldn't need any maintenance but for things like updates its troublesome.

REPLY - it's cheaper to use an old Mac Pro 4,1 which works great, then to build a Hackintosh. And an old 2010 5,1 Mac Pro can run macOS Sierra without issue - I just did it.



b. The Mac Mini I think could be my favorite option as it’s compact and has full apple support. My only worry is if this will be powerful enough to run the Server/RAID etc?

REPLY - bad choice. A new Mac Mini with 16 gig RAM costs as much as a used 2010 5,1 Mac Pro, and the Mac Pro with two x16 lane card slots will dramatically outperform the Mac Mini


One idea that i found that looks great was the High Point NA381TB although have no idea where to purchase this in the UK and Ireland:

http://www.highpoint-tech.com/USA_new/series_NA381TB_overview.htm

REPLY - if you get that RAID chassis, remember, you must buy the Areca ARC-1882ix-24 card as well (hidden expense).


Or something along the lines of the Sonnet xMac mini server:

http://www.sonnettech.com/product/xmacminiserver.html

REPLY - and what will this do for you - hold the Mac Mini ? You still need a host adaptor card. don't use the Mac Mini.



Does anyone have any incite on these or alternatives? this probably the area i need most help in.

REPLY - yes, you need help. I can help you.



c. We actually own a Mac Pro which could work although don’t think we’d be willing to give it up just to run a server when it's such a great machine for editing.

REPLY - then use an old Mac Pro.


3. RAID / Storage

What we’re looking for here is something rack expandable starting at around the 64TB mark or maybe larger. We already own a huge amount of 3.5” Seagate 4TB drives that could be repurposed. We’d like a RAID that's rebuildable in the event of drive failure as the server will now be our only source of DATA and needs to be reliable.

REPLY - then simply buy a large empty RAID array. Remember, if it's PCIe, you need a host adaptor card.

In this category there are many options but i've boiled it down to this particular card- High Point 2760A which looks good and OSX compatible:

http://www.highpoint-tech.com/USA_new/CS-series_rr276x-rr274x.htm

Any other ideas?

REPLY - yes, I have other ideas.


I haven't done too much research yet on enclosures other than the one mentioned above but seems relatively straightforward. Once I have the correct cards that is compatible with our server.

REPLY - you better do lots of research or hire someone to help you, because it's easy to make mistakes.



There’s a lot more to mention and speak about but I think this is a good basis to start talking without overwhelming!

REPLY - ask away.

Please ask me as many questions as you need and I really appreciate your thoughts and replies.

bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


Return to posts index

Alex James
Re: DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 4, 2016 at 12:05:45 pm

Hi Bob,

Many thanks for your reply. I really appreciate all of the work you put in both here on CC, and around the web.

Ok so thats some great incite and at least from what you've replied looks like I'm heading in the right direction and haven't missed too much....

In conclusion to your answers:

- NFS requires further reading - this seems a good place to start - http://www.fcp.co/final-cut-pro/tutorials/1421-how-to-share-final-cut-pro-x...
- Use 10Gbe CAT6
- The Sonnet Twin 10G is the one to get (We are starting to edit more and more 4K).
- Stay away from Akitio
- Mini Mac is a NO
- Hackintosh still a possibilty / Mac 5,1


Further questions:

1. Network

Can you recommend a good budget switch?

What PCI 10GBe Network card would you recommend for the Mac Pro 5,1/Hackintosh? This one-
http://www.sonnettech.com/product/presto10gbeserver.html
I assume this is what's in the sonnet Twin 10G, Correct?
Is there an advantage with the twin over the single?
http://www.sonnettech.com/product/presto10gbe.html


2. Server

Good idea on the old school Mac Pro 5,1. My only problem with this is that is it future proof? For example I know System definitions 3,1 and 4,1 are now not supported in Sierra.

Dedicated NAS box?
This would be going to a company direct right? Looks expensive! e.g gblabs - http://www.gblabs.com/products/FastNAS_F_16/

Good point on the 'Sonnet xMac mini server' - This is just a glorified case with PCI expansion correct?


3. RAID

The main thing I may have missed (still getting my head around) is the Host adaptor card, would this not be the High-point RocketRAID 2760A I mentioned?

The 'Areca ARC-1882IX-24 PCI-Express 3.0' looks great also, does this offer anything extra over the RocketRaid. Can you recommend any other cards that would be compatible/best?

Are there any other components I've missed? I mean I just need a chassis to hold all my drives right and run a load of SATA cables from the SAS breakouts on the raid card?


Thanks again Bob, Lots to learn and think about. You are correct I'm definitely going to be asking alot of questions/need help along the way. Don't suppose you know anybody in Ireland who may be experienced in this realm?

Kind Regards,

Alex James

TINY ARK
http://www.tinyark.com


Return to posts index


Bob Zelin
Re: DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 4, 2016 at 5:14:39 pm

you can ask me anything that you want. Just email me directly, and I will help you.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


Return to posts index

John Perez
Re: DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 5, 2016 at 9:09:30 am

Hi Alex,

With careful choices of hardware and software it is of course possible to build your own storage system, especially if advised and guided by very experienced people such as Bob.

However there are several very robust and fast ready made solutions that can be purchased and got up and running with very little 'heart ache' from manufacturers that specialise in storage systems for video. The 'guarantee' that they work and can scale and the peace of mind there is a support team available might be invaluable if your company will relies on the storage system to make money.

There are plenty of others (which are easy to find and Bob has listed them many times before) but have a quick look at http://lumaforge.com as they some of the best FCPX support on their systems. I've used one of them in action and it worked like a dream with FCPX (and all other software).

Best of luck either way.

John Perez



Return to posts index

Alex James
Re: DIY - NAS Storage Solution for FCPX
on Oct 6, 2016 at 1:48:19 pm

Hi John,

Thanks for your reply.

Bob has suggested some all-in-one box options that might be good for our company such as the:

QNAP IBQ-871T-i716


I think since this is highly expandable via thunderbolt and that we only look to serve 4-5 editors at once we don't really need anything more advanced and at a similar cost its hard to ignore. As you mentioned, the after-sales support could also be priceless.

I did like the idea of a gargantuan project though!

Alex

Alex James

TINY ARK
http://www.tinyark.com


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]